Connect with us

News

How bad is crime in Colorado? We examined 35 years of data to put today’s trends in context.

Published

on

How bad is crime in Colorado? We examined 35 years of data to put today’s trends in context.

Is Colorado less safe than it used to be?

The answer is not as simple as the question seems. It depends on where you live, who you ask and against which decade you’re comparing today’s crime.

Colorado, like many other states, has experienced shocking spikes in violence during the pandemic. The state’s homicide rate in 2020 surged to a 25-year high after 293 people were killed, leaving more than five people dead every week, on average. Motor vehicle thefts and aggravated assaults, like shootings and stabbings, skyrocketed statewide as well.

Concerns about crime and public safety featured prominently in speeches by Colorado’s top political leadership on the opening day of the 2022 legislative session and will be a major topic in the year’s lawmaking and elections, including the governor’s race. Some observers have referred to recent trends as a crime wave or “tsunami.”

The public, too, is worried about crime. Nearly half of Coloradans surveyed by the Colorado Health Institute in the summer of 2021 said gun violence was a serious problem and 40% said crime generally was a serious problem. Those concerns, however, ranked lower than anxiety over homelessness, climate change and the cost of health care and housing.

But what’s actually going on with crime in Colorado?

The Denver Post analyzed 35 years of crime data as reported by local law enforcement to the FBI from 1985 to 2020 and spoke with criminologists to paint a broader picture of trends in the state and provide more context about crime in our communities.

The analysis focused on eight of the most serious crimes — homicide, aggravated assault, rape, robbery, arson, burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft — and did not include drug offenses or lesser crimes like trespassing. Accurate statewide data for 2021 will not be available for several months as many cities are still finalizing their crime statistics.

Some of the major findings include:

  • Not all types of crime are rising. While Colorado’s rates for homicide, aggravated assault and motor vehicle theft rose by more than 10% in 2020 over the average of the prior three years, rates for rape, larceny, robbery and burglary stayed relatively level or declined.
  • Increases in aggravated assaults — which include shootings and stabbings — and motor vehicle thefts are the biggest drivers of increased rates statewide of violent crime and property crime.
  • Colorado’s communities are not a monolith. Trends in the state’s largest cities differ from each other, as do those in medium-sized towns.
  • Colorado’s 2020 violent crime rate was the highest it’s been since 1995, but is lower than it was between 1985 and 1995. The state’s 2020 property crime rate was the highest recorded since 2008, but is less than half the rate recorded in the mid-1980s.
  • While Colorado’s violent crime rate jumped 10% between 2019 and 2020 — the largest single-year increase since 1990 — that increase came as part of a six-year upward trend. The state’s violent crime rate increased by 8% year-over-year in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Criminologists interviewed by The Post warned against ascribing changes in crime trends to any single factor.

“We don’t know, to be completely frank,” said David Pyrooz, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder who studies crime. “There are a lot of causes of crime.”

It will take years to develop the data and research to investigate specific factors, he said, especially during a time with an unprecedented amount of the unprecedented: a pandemic, a major protest movement and an ever-increasing addiction crisis.

“I don’t think we should panic yet,” said Mary Dodge, a professor of criminal justice at the University of Colorado Denver. “And I think politicians need to take caution to not make knee-jerk decisions. Making decisions based on a few years of increase is a bad idea.”

But at the same time, the changes in crime are forcing people to question the future of Colorado after it has undergone so many changes in the last decades. The population boomed, cities swelled and rising costs of living are forcing changes in neighborhoods and everyday life.

“I would be very worried if people are comfortable with the way things stand right now,” Pyrooz said.


Click to enlarge

When did Colorado’s crime rates start to rise?

Colorado’s violent crime rate started to tick upward in 2014 after eight years of decline and it’s risen nearly every year since then. Violent crime, under the standards set by the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program, includes homicides, aggravated assaults, rape and robberies.

The violent crime rate’s 10% rise between 2019 and 2020 is the steepest climb in that time period. That’s in part because Colorado saw a decrease in 2019 compared to 2018.

Per-capita crime rates — the number of incidents per 100,000 people — are important to understanding trends in Colorado because they allow more relevant comparisons over time as the state’s population has grown.

The state’s property crime rate has remained relatively steady since 2008, despite a 5% uptick in 2020 compared to the average of the prior three years. The rate recorded in 2020 is the highest since 2007, but less than half the rates of property crime in the late 1980s and significantly lower than those recorded in the early 2000s.

Property crime includes arson, burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft.

Friends and family of hit and ...

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

Friends and family of hit-and-run victim Chris Patton embrace after a press conference in front of the Denver Police Department on Oct. 20, 2020. Patton was struck and killed by a driver in downtown Denver on Sept. 7, 2020.

What about in the state’s largest cities?

As the state’s largest cities, Denver, Colorado Springs and Aurora have a much larger impact on the statewide crime rate than other communities. And the trends in those cities differ.

Denver’s violent crime rate began to rise in 2011 and has trended upward since, with the largest increase between 2019 and 2020. After eight years of general decline, Aurora’s violent crime rate began to increase in 2015, with the largest increase also between 2019 and 2020.

Colorado Springs’ violent crime started to increase in 2016 after nine years of relative stability. But unlike Denver and Aurora, Colorado Springs saw its smallest year-over-year violent crime increase between 2019 and 2020, when the rate rose 1%.

The cities’ property crime numbers also paint different pictures.

Denver experienced a slow rise in its property crime rate since 2011 before a 25% spike over the three-year average in 2020. Aurora’s property crime numbers remained relatively level until also spiking in 2020. Colorado Springs’ property crime rate, however, has remained steady since approximately 2005 and declined between 2019 and 2020.

What types of crime have gone up the most in Colorado?

Rates for four crimes rose by double-digit percentages statewide in 2020 compared to their three-year averages: homicide, aggravated assault, arson and motor vehicle theft.

About the data and definitions

This reporting uses data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Every year, local law enforcement agencies across the country provide to the FBI the number of each type of crime that has been reported to them. The data does not capture crimes that are not reported to law enforcement, which can make counts for crimes less likely to be reported to police — like rape — less accurate. The data analyzed by The Denver Post does not include drug offenses or minor crimes like trespassing. The dataset can also be incomplete because some agencies do not report their numbers.
Crime rate: Number of crimes per 100,000 residents of a specific geographic area
Violent crime: Total number of homicides, aggravated assaults, rapes and robberies
Property crime: Total number of arsons, burglaries, larceny and motor vehicle thefts
Aggravated assault: An unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury, usually accompanied by the use of a weapon or by other means likely to produce death or great bodily harm

The motor vehicle theft rate increased the most. Its 2020 rate of 534 thefts per 100,000 people is 36% higher than the three-year average.

Data shows that the state’s increase in violent crime is primarily driven by the increase in the rate of aggravated assaults, which rose 18% in 2020 over the three-year average.

While the homicide rate saw a greater percentage increase — up 30% in 2020 over the three-year average — there are far more aggravated assaults in any given year than homicides. For example, Coloradans in 2020 reported 16,575 aggravated assaults to police and 293 homicides.

Over the last 10 years, guns have become the most common weapon used in aggravated assaults. In 2010, about 20% of aggravated assaults were committed with a gun, according to law enforcement data collected by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. By 2020, they were the primary weapon in 35% of attacks.

Similarly, the increase in the state’s property crime rate is driven primarily by the increase in motor vehicle thefts.

Colorado’s pattern of rising homicides, aggravated assaults and motor vehicle thefts match national trends from 2020. Between 2019 and 2020, the number of homicides, aggravated assaults and motor vehicle thefts rose nationally while robberies, rapes, burglaries and theft declined.

What about in the big cities?

In Denver and Colorado Springs, the rise in violent crime has been driven primarily by aggravated assaults. If aggravated assaults are removed, violent crime totals for both cities show a decline every year since 2018. Compared to the three-year average, the number of aggravated assaults in Colorado Springs was up 25% in 2020 and up 36% in Denver.

Aurora’s rising violent crime rate is also driven primarily by an increase in aggravated assaults — the rate was up 42% in 2020 compared to the three-year average — though robberies have increased as well.

All three large cities saw their homicide rates spike in 2020. Both Aurora and Denver saw their homicide rates rise 50% over the three-year average and Colorado Springs’ rate rose 33%.

In Denver, 95 people died by homicide in 2020, the highest number since 1981. Homicides remained at an elevated level in Denver in 2021, with 96 people killed — but the per-capita rate remains below the highs seen in the early 1990s.

Motor vehicle thefts also saw the biggest increases in two of the cities. Denver and Aurora saw the number of motor vehicle thefts surge more than 50% in 2020 over their three-year averages, though Colorado Springs’ 2020 number remained level.


1642943399 760 How bad is crime in Colorado We examined 35 years
Click to enlarge

Are some crimes going down or staying level?

Yes. The statewide rate for rape decreased 14% in 2020 compared to the three-year average. Rates for robbery, larceny and burglary remained relatively level with changes of 5% or less from their three-year averages.

Denver saw a 12% reduction in its rape rate and its robbery rate remained level in 2020. In Aurora, the rates of rape, larceny and burglary remained level.

Colorado Springs saw the largest reductions. Its rape and robbery rates dropped 25% in 2020 compared to the three-year average and its burglary, larceny and motor vehicle thefts remained level. Of the three cities, it was the only one to record a decrease in its property crime rate in 2020.

How do 2020’s crime rates compare historically?

Rates of violent crime and property crime for Colorado and its three largest cities remain lower than those recorded during a nationwide crime explosion in the early 1990s.

Colorado’s 2020 violent crime rate is the highest recorded since 1995, though it remains lower than the rates recorded each year between 1985 and 1995. The state’s property crime rates have declined steeply since 1985. While the 2020 property crime rate is the highest since 2008, it is less than half the record high in 1986.

Denver and Aurora’s historical crime trends also mirror the national pattern — 2020’s violent crime rates are about equal to those recorded in the early 1990s, though lower than record highs.

Colorado Springs’s violent crime rate bucks those trends, however. Unlike Denver and Aurora, the Springs did not experience high rates of violence in the early 1990s. Its 2020 violent crime rate is the highest ever recorded.

Property crime rates for all three cities in 2020 were half the rates seen in the mid-1980s.

Community members hold their fists in ...

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

Community members hold their fists in the air during a Park Hill community healing vigil in response to recent shooting and killings of young black men in the neighborhood in Denver on July 27, 2020. The vigil was held in the Park Hill Center or “The Holly” as it is known in the neighborhood. “Our gun violence has got to stop,” said Sherri Landrum. Landrum has lost several members of her family to gun violence, including her son in 2004 and her husband in 2013.

How do Colorado’s three largest cities compare?

Aurora’s violent crime rate in 2020 exceeded Denver’s that year — the first time that’s happened since 2002. Aurora’s violent crime rate was 898 crimes per 100,000 people, Denver recorded a rate of 882 crimes per 100,000 people and Colorado Springs recorded 604 crimes per 100,000 people.

Denver’s property crime rate, however, outstripped those recorded in Aurora and Colorado Springs. Denver recorded a rate of 4,779 property crimes per 100,000 people while Colorado Springs recorded a rate of 3,420 per 100,000 people and Aurora recorded 3,380 per 100,000 people.

Pyrooz, the CU Boulder associate professor, said crime is not only most heavily concentrated in larger cities, but in specific areas of cities.

For example, about a third of the state’s 293 homicides in 2020 occurred in Denver. A third of those 95 Denver homicides occurred in just seven of the city’s 77 neighborhoods.

“It’s our large cities that need the solutions first,” he said.

What does data from other large Colorado communities show us?

Not all of Colorado’s largest communities saw violent crime spike in 2020.

Violent crime numbers in Thornton, Fort Collins, Arvada and Westminster decreased in 2020 compared to previous years. Lakewood’s 2020 violent crime total is higher than 2019, but lower than 2017 and 2018.

Nubia Marquez, right, whose mother was ...

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

Nubia Marquez, right, whose mother was one of six shooting victims, hugs family member Edgar Ortiz, with back to camera, outside the scene of the shooting at the Canterbury Mobile Home Park in Colorado Springs on May 9, 2021. A gunman killed six people at a family birthday party before taking own life, police said. The victims were all members of the same extended family a party attendee said.

What do we know about 2021?

Data reported to the FBI by Colorado Springs and Aurora for the first three quarters of 2021 show declines in homicides in both cities compared to the same period in 2020. Denver recorded one more homicide in 2021 than in 2020.

But other major categories of crime — aggravated assault, burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft — are up year-over-year in Denver and Aurora during that period. Colorado Springs, however, reported declines in every category.

How do Colorado’s crime trends compare to other states?

Colorado was not the only state to see violent crime increase in 2020. At least 37 states saw their homicide rates rise in 2020 and many large cities, like those in Colorado, saw major increases in homicides, according to the Pew Research Center.

Colorado’s violent crime rate of 423 crimes per 100,000 people in 2020 was the 20th-highest in the U.S. Alaska recorded a rate of 838 violent crimes per 100,000 people — the highest in the country. Colorado exceeded the national violent crime rate for the first time in 2018 and stayed above the national rate in the two years that followed.

In 2020, Colorado had the third-highest property crime rate in the country, after Louisiana and New Mexico. Colorado’s property crime rate has exceeded the national rate every year since 2015. The state property crime rate also exceeded the national rate between 1985 and 1996 and between 2001 and 2006.

Did homicides rise only in Democrat-controlled states and cities?

No. An analysis of homicide data from the first six months of 2020 published in The New York Times showed that homicides were up 29% in Democrat-led cities in the sample and up 26% in cities with a Republican mayor. Fifteen of the 37 states that saw homicide rate increases in 2020 were governed by Republicans.

Researchers also have found that cities that did not cut their police budgets in 2020 in response to protests following George Floyd’s murder saw staggering increases in homicides along with cities that did make reductions.

Denver police officers detain two men ...

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

Denver police officers detain two men from a homeless encampment at Civic Center Park in Denver on Sept. 7, 2021. The city of Denver has temporarily shut down Civic Center Park, citing health and safety issues.

What’s driving crime trends?

Criminologists interviewed by The Post said there are hundreds of variables that might contribute to changes in crime trends: increased gun sales, financial pressures, political unrest, the substance use crisis, changes in attitudes towards police, changing levels of police pro-activity, understaffed law enforcement agencies, unaddressed mental health and addiction needs, specific policy changes to the criminal legal system and a state of normlessness created by the pandemic.

“We’ve been asking that question for years,” said Stacey Hervey, an associate professor in the Criminal Justice and Criminology Department at Metropolitan State University of Denver. “It’s so multi-faceted.”

News

What Happened To Ellen DeGeneres Today

Published

on

What Happened To Ellen DeGeneres Today

Ellen Cancelled?

The audiences have adored Ellen DeGeneres’s TV Show since 2003. Ellen has been the most loving host of the talk show and finally bidding farewell after 18 seasons.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the show’s host, Ellen, said this decision to exit the show took a hard and long year. This announcement was made looking at the turbulent times of the long-running talk show. The ratings for the show have plunged after the negative news surfaced that accused Ellen and others of forming a toxic work atmosphere on set.

On the other hand, Ellen told The Hollywood Reporter that the show doesn’t explore her creativity anymore. She decided ahead of signing a three-year extension contract in 2018. And began this journey with her first sitcom Ellen on ABC, which aired from 1994 to 1998. She began hosting Ellen Degeneres’s show after the cancellation of The Ellen Show in 2002, and since then, she has been the only host of the show.

 Allegation Of Staff Mistreatment

In a BuzzFeed article, the show was getting a bad wave of allegations of bullying and harassment behind the scenes in July 2020. It mentioned a negative workspace from one current and ten former employees. Subsequently, an article was released by BuzzFeed mentioning that 36 anonymous employees alleged “happenings of assault, harassment, sexual misconduct from show’s top producer.” Later an internal investigation was arranged by WarnerBros, and 3 top-level producers were sacked. Ellen also apologized to her staff in an email before addressing the same on 21st September, season 18.

Ellen also said that her desire to leave the show had zero to do with the ongoing conflict. She said that the accusations were sad and hurtful, but she quit the show because she would not return for another season; and also mentioned that what happened should never have happened, and she takes things like these very seriously. She expressed regret and apologized to the individuals impacted by the show.

She also said she understands her position, and with that position comes power and privilege; and she took full responsibility for what happened at her show.

The episode has the highest rating in 4 years, but soon it was followed by the loss of million viewers in less than six months, as reported by the New York Times.

1653078165 937 What Happened To Ellen DeGeneres Today

End Of An Era

Mike Darnell, Warner Bros’ unscripted TV President, lauded the show as an unforgettable piece of television and will be deeply missed.” Ellen started as a small program and became a sensation through the years. Over the years, it showed that it was home to superstars and other heartfelt stories. The show brought peace, joy, laughter, and other countless emotions for 18 years.”

Where To Watch

The soundest way to watch it is to tune in on NBC when her episodes air. You can watch short clips of episodes on her official youtube channel;or watch them on her app, EllenTube or Hulu.

The post What Happened To Ellen DeGeneres Today appeared first on Gizmo Story.

Continue Reading

News

Ginni Thomas’ emails deepen her involvement in 2020 election

Published

on

Ginni Thomas’ emails deepen her involvement in 2020 election

WASHINGTON — Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and a conservative political activist, urged Republican lawmakers in Arizona after the 2020 presidential election to choose their own slate of electors, arguing that results giving Joe Biden a victory in the state were marred by fraud.

The revelations first published by The Washington Post on Friday show that Thomas was more involved than previously known in efforts, based on unsubstantiated claims of fraud, to overturn Biden’s victory and keep then-President Donald Trump in office.

In the days after The Associated Press and other news organizations called the presidential election for Biden, Thomas emailed two lawmakers in Arizona to urge them to choose “a clean slate of Electors” and “stand strong in the face of political and media pressure.” The AP obtained the emails under the state’s open records law.

Thomas also had written to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows in the weeks following the election encouraging him to work to overturn Biden’s victory and keep Trump in office, according to text messages first reported by the Post and CBS News.

Thomas was a staunch Trump supporter who acknowledged she attended the Jan. 6 “Stop the Steal” rally on the Ellipse but left before Trump spoke and his supporters later stormed the Capitol.

She has been critical of the ongoing congressional investigation into the Jan. 6 violence, including signing onto a letter to House Republicans calling for the expulsion of Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois from the GOP conference for joining the Jan. 6 congressional committee.

Justice Thomas, meanwhile, has taken part in the court’s consideration of lawsuits challenging the election results. The court turned away every challenge without a hearing, though Thomas was among three conservative justices who said cases from Pennsylvania should be heard. In February 2021, Thomas called the cases an “ideal opportunity” to address an important question whether state lawmakers or state courts get the last word about the manner in which federal elections are carried out.

In January, Thomas was the lone member of the court who supported a bid by Trump to withhold documents from the Jan 6. committee. The documents were held by the National Archives and Records Administration and included presidential diaries, visitor logs, speech drafts and handwritten notes dealing with Jan. 6 from Meadows’ files.

Thomas did not immediately respond to a request for comment, made to the court Friday.

Democratic lawmakers have called on Thomas to step aside from election-related cases, but he has given no indication he intends to do so.

The latest disclosure comes at a time when Chief Justice John Roberts has ordered an internal investigation into the leaking of a draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, in one of the court’s most prominent cases in decades, and opinion polls have shown a loss of public confidence in the institution.

Thomas was referencing the leaked opinion at a conference in Dallas last week when he talked about the damage to the court. “I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them.”

Ginni Thomas has said she and the justice keep their work separate. “Like so many married couples, we share many of the same ideals, principles, and aspirations for America. But we have our own separate careers, and our own ideas and opinions too. Clarence doesn’t discuss his work with me, and I don’t involve him in my work,” Thomas told the Washington Free Beacon in an interview published in March.

Thomas sent emails to Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers and Rep. Shawnna Bolick, who this year is running for Arizona secretary of state. That would make her the top elections administrator in Arizona.

She wrote them again on Dec. 13, the day before electors met in state capitols around the country to formally cast their votes for president.

“As state lawmakers, you have the Constitutional power and authority to protect the integrity of our elections — and we need you to exercise that power now!” the email said. “Never before in our nation’s history have our elections been so threatened by fraud and unconstitutional procedures.”

Bowers dismissed the idea of replacing Arizona’s electors shortly after the election. The following year, Bolick introduced a bill that would have allowed the Legislature to overturn any presidential election results for any reason, and replace the electors.

Bolick has said her legislation would have made the process more bipartisan by requiring a two-thirds vote, but the text of the proposal calls for a simple majority. In any event, Bowers essentially killed the legislation before it ever came to a vote.

___

Associated Press writer Bob Christie contributed to this report from Phoenix. Cooper also reported from Phoenix.

Continue Reading

News

Who Is Sophie In The Staircase

Published

on

Who Is Sophie In The Staircase

The latest episode of The Staircase left the audience dangling with many questions, one of the “what is justice?”. Episode put forward a character that has been in the limelight since the start, and she was a definitive figure to put forward the jury’s questions like justice, fate, and liberty of the audience. You already know whom we are talking about, silver-haired mystery Sophie Brunet.

HBO Max’s The Staircase is based on real-life occurrences circling the death of Kathleen Peterson in 2001. Colin Firth (Michael Peterson) finds his life in turmoil when he finds his wife, Toni Collette (Kathleen), unconscious at the base of the stairs. Turns out she’s dead, and Michael is the sole suspect. The show revolves around Michael’s relationship with his wife and how media engulfs his life, despite his pleas for purity and innocence.

Who is Sophie?

Juliette Binoche is playing the character of Sophie Brunet. It was in the 4th episode when their true identity of Sophie came to light. We see Sophie Brunet is connected to the true-crime documentary on which this show is based. She operated as an editor on the 2004 original documentary on the case. You can find her name on the IMDb site under people who worked on the film.

She was introduced in the first episode, and she is the only one in the present timeline with Michael Peterson as there is no clue if other Petersons are in contact with their father or not, or so it looks like. We got to know more about her enigmatic aura when she was put in front of Jean’s camera for an interview.

According to her IMDb, she has worked on other projects such as Blue is the Warmest Colour, Call My Agent and Jeuxd’ influence.

1653077444 663 Who Is Sophie In The Staircase

Are Michael And Sophie Related?

We saw Sophie writing the letter to Michael, behind bars, at the end of episode 4. And it came to light that they exchanged many letters while her working on the documentary, and Michael was making rounds to courts and prisons.

They were in a relationship for 12 long years, but in 2019, the couple split because Michael was too old to move to French with Sophie and start a new life. It was also not easy for Sophie to move as they wanted to stay close to each other and their families.

 Where To Watch The Staircase?

It is streaming exclusively on HBO Max. The first 3 episodes debuted on 5th May, and the following episodes will be released weekly on Thursdays till 9th June.

 Total Episodes & Runtime

The miniseries have 8 episodes, and each of them is 60 mins long.

 Docuseries 2004 Version

Netflix has the Documentary version of The Staircase, 2004. It has 13 episodes and features the case very closely, including original courtroom interviews, video footage, and more. This 2004 documentary inspired the 2022 new miniseries.

The post Who Is Sophie In The Staircase appeared first on Gizmo Story.

Continue Reading

Trending